Qatar National Bank (QNB) Group has announced acquisition of a 49 per cent stake in the Bank of Commerce and Development, one of the leading private banks in the Libyan financial sector. The announcement was made during the extraordinary general meeting (EGM) of the Bank of Commerce and Development which was held in Benghazi, Libya recently. It approved QNB Group as a strategic partner of the Bank according to the memorandum of agreement between the two institutions. On the occasion, Ali Shareef Al-Emadi, QNB Group Chief Executive Officer, expressed confidence for this strategic partnership which comes in line with QNB Group’s strategic plan of international expansion in selected and promising markets. The Group looks forward to increasing fields in the Libyan market which is anticipated to record healthy growth rates paving the way to a wide range of banking services in partnership with the Bank of Commerce and Development. Jamal Abdelmalek, Chairman of The Bank of Commerce and Development valued this step indicating that this agreement will result in an increase in the Bank’s capital, which will support its financial position and its ability to expand in the Libyan market. It will also allow the Bank to benefit from the expertise of QNB Group as one of the largest and most important banks in the Middle East and North Africa region. He added that the Board of Directors and Executive Management of the Bank of Commerce and Development are looking forward to working closely with QNB Group. The Bank of Commerce and Development was established in 1995 and has a network of 32 branches supported by 82 ATMs, with nearly 820 staff. The Bank’s total assets are $2 billion. QNB Group will be represented in the Bank of Commerce and Development’s Board of Directors with a per centage equal to its shareholding as per this agreement. QNB Group will provide administrative and technical services for the operations of the Bank of Commerce and Development. This will strengthen the technical and administrative capabilities of the Bank in addition to harmonizing objectives, policies and procedures of both banks’ operations and standardizing risk management strategy for the benefit of the two institutions. QNB Group will offer added advantage from its international expertise and specialized services provided by its subsidiaries and wholly-owned companies, including QNB International Holdings, which is headquartered in Luxembourg, QNB Capital, registered in the Qatar Financial Centre and QNB Banque Privée (Suisse) the full private banking subsidiary of the QNB Group in Geneva Switzerland” and QNB financial Services.